The E-Flogging: From an anonymous woman in the secular community.
I reported earlier that Ron Lindsay, the current CEO of the Center for Inquiry, has retained his position despite outrage from a small corner of our community.
As expected, individuals such as Rebecca Watson, who is best known for Elevatorgate, have called for a general boycott of CFI. Another blogger, Greta Christina, has followed suit and publicly declared a withdrawal of support for CFI.
This seems ludicrous to me. Why withdraw support for an organization that has done and continues to do a great deal of good for women and men in the secular community? Taking in the possibility that I am missing something on this issue, I decided to ask a respected woman in our community what she thought about this current “controversy.
Because of the bullying tactics used by some members of our community, she felt she could not speak openly and honestly about this issue if her name was attached. So I offered her the chance to speak without the fear of reprisal. The following is what she had to say:
“At the recent Women In Secularism 2 Conference, a speech was given addressing the fired-up and hostile feminists who are hijacking part of the movement. When it was pointed out that some feminists, a minority, were being extreme to the point of absurdity, those same extreme and absurd feminists went off the deep end. Now their rage is directed at CFI, who helped sponsor the conference in the first place.
Not only are their rants completely incoherent, but they made the point clear that they are the biggest negative influence on feminism since it began. Not only are they doing damage to our community, they are trying to coerce other women to adopt their views under the threat of being called out as gender traitors, or worse, destroying women’s hopes for a future in the secular movement.
This abusive minority doesn’t speak for all feminists, or the moderate women who support real change, but they act as if they do, without actually asking anyone if they honestly represent their views. Instead they seem to be cheerleaders for the angry and disillusioned women among atheists, without any concern for the damage they are doing to the movement as a whole. They are in fact feeding off of the destructive power they have.
Now they have targeted CFI, and it doesn’t stop. They are planning on raging against anyone who they fear might stand in their way. Like a bunch of piranha, hungry for blood, power, and control.
They might actually have some valid points, if they made some, but those points are lost in the vitriol and drama. If they stood for something obvious, it is that they stand for themselves and gaining power. Power not for women in general, because the majority of women are striving for egalitarianism and want to earn their place on their own merit, but specifically for these few dirty-playing, playground bullies who think their vaginas mean they should have unlimited control and power.
That is why I want to call them out.
This is not to say that the other side of this argument is without its faults. The rape threats have been sickening and both sides have done unwarranted damage. The extremists on both sides of this issue have gone out of their way to perpetuate the issue to the point of hyperbole and vitriol. The other side has equally lost their valid points amid the vitriol and trolling tactics.
Finally, all these feminists have done is complain. They have contributed nothing substantial to the movement since they started using these tactics and taking this approach. When these feminists started out in the the movement they were an amazing asset that inspired a lot of women to get involved. Then they went off the deep end. They used to contribute to real change for the hopes of women to be the strong leaders, and while real strong women have come into the movement, these few became radicals and now seek only to get more power and attention while throwing everyone they can under the bus. They feed off of the attention like vampires, and suck the life out of the movement.
I am not saying they should be pushed out, but if their only message is how much they can hate the men or the women of this movement who disagree with them (on even the smallest of points), then perhaps the movement would be better off without them.”
Greta went on and on in her blog about how no feminists told men or women who disagree with them to STFU. True, Greta, that exact phrase is hardly ever used. However, when some women call a man a “mansplainer” or call a woman a “gender traitor,” then they ARE telling them to STFU. And when they tell a man to “check his privilege” they are also telling him to STFU. There are clearly some men (and women) out there who deserve to be told to STFU when they troll, make rape threats, or have no interest in a civil conversation or debate about this issue. But we have seen over and over again where men and women who were being civil were called “mansplainers,” “gender traitors,” or called “sexists” just because they disagreed. In other words, they were told to STFU.
A woman we know was told that she was a “southern educated woman who wouldn’t know feminism if it slapped her in the face.” She was told this because she disagreed with a feminist blogger on an issue. That is the type of behavior that Mr. Lindsay was calling out.
If you are not one of those feminists that engage in that behavior, then his speech was not directed at you, and you should have no problem with it.
Or perhaps, for Greta, Rebecca, and others, this is a case of “I think thou doth protest too much.
Not only have they usurped all the power and control by protesting too much, they don’t have a leg to stand on while doing their complaining. Not one of them can refute valid points made. The best argument held so far is, it was a man who dared to criticize women, and worst of all they were hostages to the situation. Yet the door was open for a massive exodus.
Another complaint was they were not given equal time, well many women and men bloggers, writers, and podcasters could say the same thing. It’s a conference speech: not a press conference. Not once have they been given equal time to respond? Then what do they call their blog entries about this “controversy” if not a response? And those other writers and bloggers and podcasters are now getting shouted down.
Worse is that their disgraceful behavior is applauded by masses equally as absurd and blind as church going followers of medieval doctrines. The lowering of standards and the bar of discourse has become pitiful.
Part 1: http://freethoughtblogs.com/greta/2013/06/17/parsing-cfis-non-statement/
Part 2: http://freethoughtblogs.com/greta/2013/05/30/contempt-ron-lindsay-context/
Rebecca Watson calls for a boycott… again:
Reap Paden goes after all of it, but he’s just, you know, mansplaining: